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Editor: Please welcome back guest author Zoë Periale with her review of Disneyland’s newest stage show:

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Mickey and the Magical Map is a new show in Disneyland’s Fantasyland Theatre. Many people will know this location to previously house The Princess Fantasy Faire, Snow White: An Enchanting Musical, or one of it’s many other previous shows and events. Upon taking your seat in the theater the first thing you’ll see is naturally, the stage. When not in use a large cloth reminiscent of Yen Sid’s sorcerer’s hat from Fantasia’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice covers what soon will be revealed as the map itself. Surrounding the map and it’s cover are large panels of gold trimmed cartoonish wood as well as multiple buckets of paint.

When the show begins, you are quickly introduced to the main characters. Yen Sid, the Sorcerer who presides not only over the map and his workshop, but as Mickey’s Mentor. Mickey Mouse himself in his classic Sorcerer’s Apprentice robes, as well as a cast of characters called map makers. The story of the show goes as this; Mickey once again is getting ahead of himself, frustrated at simply being an apprentice. Desiring to paint the map like the other map makers, he is not yet allowed as he has not learned the secret of the map; which is the key to graduating from his apprentice role. Chaos ensues as once again, Yen Sid puts too much faith in Mickey and leaves him alone with the map and a paint brush. As seen in the Fantasia Short or even the Junction Point series of video games, Epic Mickey, our curious hero can’t be trusted alone with anything that may be magical.

(April 25, 2013)  Mickey and the Magical Map (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland Resort)

Disneyland is restoring long missed magic to the newly refurbished Fantasyland theatre when Mickey Mouse and a cast of beloved Disney characters will embark on a series of musical adventures through the magical powers of a sorcerer’s map in “Mickey and the Magical Map.” The all-new live show coming is scheduled to open on May 25.

“We’re very excited to welcome guests to the Disneyland Resort this summer to enjoy all the entertainment and attractions that make this a world-class, family vacation destination,” said Michael Colglazier, President of the Disneyland Resort. “We’re particularly thrilled to debut our captivating new show ‘Mickey and the Magical Map’ and to invite guests to experience Fantasy Faire, a new themed area with Disney Princess encounters and two live shows based on favorite princess stories.”

The entertainment lineup for the fourth ship in the Disney Cruise Line fleet, the Disney Fantasy, has been revealed. We learned earlier that a version of the Aladdin musical from California Adventure would come to the Disney Fantasy. Now we are told that a brand new stage show called ‘Wishes’ looks to take Disney ship board productions to new heights.

As an aside, did they have to name it ‘Wishes’? There’s already a Walt Disney World fireworks show by that name. I’m not that worried about them getting confused, but some differences in naming would be appreciated. Update: Apparently the show starts and ends with a tribute to the fireworks show. I guess that makes it a little more appropriate.

“Wishes” will be a 45-minute musical journey about three best friends who discover the secret to being a grown-up is staying connected to their inner child. Full-scale production numbers will cover the stage as the cast of “Wishes” performs original songs and classic Disney tunes with a contemporary twist.

The story begins as long-time best friends Kayla and Nicole along with Nicole’s twin brother Brandon visit Disneyland to celebrate their high school graduation. Each is unsure of what the future holds for them, so they make a wish to go on the “Ride of Our Lives” – the show’s original opening number.

Their wish evokes an enchanted world where a cavalcade of Disney characters – including Rapunzel, Flynn Rider, Lilo, Stitch, Mulan, Hercules, Pinocchio, Timon and Pumbaa – materialize to guide the teens through their magical journey.

Notable moments include:

  • In an over-the-top musical comedy production number, the song “I’ve Got a Dream” from “Tangled” sets the scene as the Snuggly Duckling Tavern comes alive, with Rapunzel, Flynn Rider and a tavern full of hilarious thugs.
  • In the “Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride” from “Lilo and Stitch” scene, the stage fills with giant windsurfing sails, kites and surf boards. The infectious music inspires Kayla as she rides a surfboard, flying atop a giant blue wave silk.
  • King Louie and the Monkeys perform a high-energy swing band version of “I Wanna Be Like You” from the Jungle Book.

In the final act, the trio celebrates their journey at a graduation party as the pop tune “Breakthrough” from the Disney Channel original movie “Lemonade Mouth” keeps the revelry going.

Follow below the jump for a ‘Wishes’ Fact Sheet:

Disney cult classic Newsies, about newsboys who wage a labor strike in 1890s New York, is being worked into a stage musical by composer Alan Menken, lyricist Jack Feldman, choreographer Christopher Gattelli, and librettist Harvey Fierstein. Together they are adapting the movie to the stage, while adding in songs, fresh characters, new plot points, and choreography to match the modern era.

The production is being developed at Paper Mill Playhouse and really said to be more of a homage to the 1992 film. Here’s a short video from Playbill featuring the creative team. Below the jump is a video with a sneak peek at some of the songs from the show.